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Each Household may gain EUR 5500 from a Cyprus Solution
Thursday 6. March 2008
This was the point message in a new report launched by the PRIO Cyprus Centre today. More than 100 people came to the Ledra Palace in the buffer zone of Nicosia to attend the presentation of the report The day after: Commercial opportunities following a solution to the Cyprus problem by the three authors: Fiona Mullen, Özlem Oguz and Praxoula Antoniadou Kyriacou.
On the basis of experience with expanding trade between Greece and Turkey since the two countries normalized their relations in 1999, the authors have calculated the 'peace dividend' to be obtained from a solution to the Cyprus problem, given that this will give Cypriots a chance to trade with each other, Greek Cypriots to do trade with Turkey, and Turkish Cypriots full access to the EU's internal market. They have only calculated the benefit to a few key sectors, and have not included any estimate of what is to be gained from reconstruction projects following a solution. Still the benefit for each Cypriot household is estimated to be EUR 5500 in average per year during the first seven years after a solution.
The opening address was given by Special Representative of the Secretary General of the United Nations in Cyprus Michael Møller, who said the report would make "an extremely valuable contribution to discussion about the future of the island." For Møllers's speech, follow this link.
For a Reuters report on the conference, follow this link.
PRIO Director Stein Tønnesson made welcoming remarks and introduced the speakers, while Manager of the PRIO Cyprus Centre Arne Strand moderated a panel of commentators, comprising Manthos Mavrommatis and Hasan Ince from the Chambers of commerce in each of the island's two communities, and the two economists Ayse Donmezer and Symeon Matsis.
All the speakers, and also a number of people in the audience, expressed a new optimism after a period of gloom. While in the past many people tended to focus on the costs of a reunification of Cyprus, there may now be a realization of the substantial benefits that could be reaped by all Cypriots.

Detailed information and downloads from the report will be found by following this link.
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